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 Why take Halberds?

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Exarch Thomo
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PostSubject: Why take Halberds?   Mon 27 Apr 2009 - 22:45

I was thinking earlier (it's okay, I got over it), but what advantage or even point is there to take Halberds?
Sure, +1 Strength can be handy, but there isn't that much t4 Stuff out there that can't be dealt at with range. It's two handed, so you only get your profile attack, and doesn't confer any other advantage.
So, does anyone take them?
I know I haven't really considered them from more than a modelling perspective (apart from the obligatory Halberd armed champion when the system first came out - inspired by the diving charges in the WD battle reports).
It's a shame, because the models are, in my opinion, quite good - it's a shame that they seem to suck so much.
So, what is everyones opinion on the humble halberd?
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Identity
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Mon 27 Apr 2009 - 23:02

Yes, the halberd is not a very viable weapon. Sadly, many weapons are not very viable in Mordheim due to the termination of continued support and rules reviews. At least one group has houseruled halberds to give the "strikes first" ability in addition to the standard +1S. I think this is a fair and balanced addition to make the weapon serve a purpose. The spear/shield setup will still provide better defense, but the "new" halberd offers a mix.

I agree that some of the halberd models are superb, and as a lizardmen player, several of my models come standard with one. It would be great for them to be more reasonable to field.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 0:58

The only benefits, really, are:

1. They're cheaper than Double-handed
2. In early games, they're faster than double-hand
3. For a group with speed skills but not strength, it's a great way to pierce those heroes with Resilient. Ex. skaven.
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Horatius
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 5:43

It is a viable weapon for models with more than one attack in their profile, especially if they have a high iniative. A Vampire with strength four and two attacks in his starting profile is an obvious candidate for a halberd, and can develop into a real terror.
It is not as good a weapon for rank & file models without any increases, here two weapons are far and away the best possible combination.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 11:28

Identity got it right.

That's EXACTLY how we play it.
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Popmouth
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 12:28

How about giving the Halbered a parry rule? Your quite able to block with the pole right?
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 12:44

I think 2h weapons in general are just not all that worth it. There are very few cases I can think of where I would rather have whatever small bonus you get when you could have an extra attack instead (plus the bonuses of something like a mace).

Personally, I'd like to see a rule that gives a penalty for dual wielding or an extra bonus for all 2h weapons.
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Popmouth
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 12:51

I'm quite for this as well... a -1 to hit (so 4+ becomes 5+) when wielding dual is to be considered... Oh I also like the idea of giving light armour 5+ save, HA 4+ and so on... Giving armours this benifit also makes S4 more important. Enter the Halberd.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 12:56

Svenn & Popmouth: You should look at our rules: http://www.indadvendt.dk/mordheim/MORDHEIM6.pdf because that's what we do. To make two-handed weapons worthwhile, double strength also adds +1 to injury rolls (and strike to injure has been removed because it further boosted dual wielding
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 14:42

Nobody seems to have brought up one of the very good parts about halberds - henchmen! These can't get strongman or mighty blow, and thus the +1 strength can come in pretty handy! (especially if they've gotten an attack advance hehe)
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 14:44

MyLittlePwny wrote:
Nobody seems to have brought up one of the very good parts about halberds - henchmen! These can't get strongman or mighty blow, and thus the +1 strength can come in pretty handy! (especially if they've gotten an attack advance hehe)
But is +1 strength really any better than having 2 attacks instead (plus whatever bonuses those 1h weapons come with)?
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 15:01

I like Halberds for both fluff and model reasons. No, they aren't the best weapon I think to arm yourself with - but that doesn't stop me from using them (though to be fair, i don't use 'em a whole lot - more because of the warbands I play and the style I like). If it did, I'd never touch a shield either - everyone would be armed with two weapons.

I don't know, I tend to arm my warriors a lot based on the ideas in my head, not necessarily the rules on the page. Oh well, other than that I guess there isn't much use in them.

I do like Identity's mention of adding a Strike First rule, and Styro makes some good points too. But it seems some folks are for, some are against them. To each their own, I guess.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Tue 28 Apr 2009 - 20:44

My philosophy goes in the same color... ^_^

Still it's quite disturbing that 2x hand weapons seems so superior...
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 29 Apr 2009 - 0:15

Horatius wrote:
It is a viable weapon for models with more than one attack in their profile, especially if they have a high iniative. A Vampire with strength four and two attacks in his starting profile is an obvious candidate for a halberd, and can develop into a real terror.
It is not as good a weapon for rank & file models without any increases, here two weapons are far and away the best possible combination.
THIS
In addition to vampires, any character with S4 at the start of a campaign is highly effective with a halberd, as a bonus to Strength makes all the difference, and since you automatically strike last with Great/2H weapons in Mordheim oh yeah!

EDIT: Also, as a Beastman player, I give my shaman a Halberd, mostly to have his Strength match his companions (easier remembering strength values for wounding when every warband member has the same) plus so my opponents know my shaman is the one with the two-handed staff-like weapon!
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Exarch Thomo
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 29 Apr 2009 - 3:13

I suppose that is the case (I have always preferred to give my Vampire a sword and axe - there's not much the S4 can't wound - initially at any rate - and the bonus attacks - and parry - make him a bit of a monster in CC).

I do agree with the 'looks cool' points - and it is for this reason that I have a number of Halberd armed models.

The strike first thing is a good idea - it helps balance it out nicely and doesn't over-power it - and makes sense when the use of the halberd is considered....
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 29 Apr 2009 - 4:48

Without turning this topic into yet another of the "why is 2x handweapon so overpowered" ones, i'd just add to my statement that we used to play that 2nd weapon have -1 to hit and we used armor a whole lot more (modified as well) and against armor the extra strength is really handy!


So halberds look cool, they are handy when you have more attacks or need to crack armor.. nuff said!


Personally for me, i've got 2 human models with halberds which i use just because they look cool hehe - mostly on youngblood so they can get those knocked down opponent exp points easily Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Thu 30 Apr 2009 - 4:38

In my first game anyone without two hand weapons showed extremely visible difficulty in fighting compared to those that did. The +1 strength for the halberd just didn't pull its weight for those who brought them.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Thu 30 Apr 2009 - 7:53

In our current campaign, we've house-ruled that only warband leaders and certain hired swords such as the Trollslayer can fight with dual weapons. Other heroes can do it once they skill up and take the 'two weapons' combat skill. Once they have it, they fight with two weapons without penalty.

Sure, there was a lot of bitching about it to start with, but I think it really works. It makes heroes more heroic and makes those rarely seen weapons such as spears and halberds more viable options. It also means you see many more people using shields and bucklers.

The rule has a more significant impact on some warbands than others. That said, our experience has been that this is not too much of an issue.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Thu 30 Apr 2009 - 10:46

the special critical strike tables in the back of the book are one great reason to be using a halberd. Other than that, they're not that good unless you can get your henchmen group or hero an attack increase.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Fri 1 May 2009 - 14:29

Exarch Thomo wrote:
I suppose that is the case (I have always preferred to give my Vampire a sword and axe - there's not much the S4 can't wound - initially at any rate - and the bonus attacks - and parry - make him a bit of a monster in CC).
Curious as to why you'd spend an extra five gold on the axe if he has a free dagger? At S4 the add-on to armour is negated. And you still get a parry. AND space to carry a Halberd/2 Handed Weapon/Lance (for Blood Knight dudes =P)

MyLittlePwny wrote:
...youngblood so they can get those knocked down opponent exp points easily Wink
Another good reason.
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Exarch Thomo
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Sun 3 May 2009 - 5:30

[quote="Fallen"]
Exarch Thomo wrote:
I suppose that is the case (I have always preferred to give my Vampire a sword and axe - there's not much the S4 can't wound - initially at any rate - and the bonus attacks - and parry - make him a bit of a monster in CC).
Curious as to why you'd spend an extra five gold on the axe if he has a free dagger? At S4 the add-on to armour is negated. And you still get a parry. AND space to carry a Halberd/2 Handed Weapon/Lance (for Blood Knight dudes =P)

Mainly because the axe looks cool, gives a -2 to armour ( with the strength of the vamp - for anyone silly enough to spend money on it) and because I like axes. Sure, a club would be more effective, but I just have a hard time seeing a vamp beating someone with a stick...
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 10 Jun 2009 - 1:57

Halberd were developed as long handled armor piercing weapons. So they hit hard because of the long pole and you could keep your enemy away from you. They really aren't suitable for parrying. Not every staff bassed weapon is good for that. Halberdiers were often well armored because they didn't have much other way of protecting themselves. (like shields) These were weapons ot be used against armored knights.
I think -1 Armor save would be appropriate. Though not necessary probably.
1st strike... eh I guess Honestly something like hitting you when not in base contact is most accurate. But I hate those sorts of rules.
Perhaps the bonus to receiving charges from mounted opponents. Though I guess you can reach out and poke any charging model with the spear like end of the halberd. Another question to consider is, should they stay 10 GC if you are going to add these features? I would say no. If you can 1st strike with it and get +1 ST (lets leave out an additional -1 AV) That's a pretty snappy weapon. 15GC is probably an appropriate price.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 10 Jun 2009 - 1:58

" Mainly because the axe looks cool, gives a -2 to armour ( with the strength of the vamp - for anyone silly enough to spend money on it) and because I like axes. Sure, a club would be more effective, but I just have a hard time seeing a vamp beating someone with a stick..."

Give him a mace not a club. Maces were signs of authority and power. Very appropriate to give him a mace.
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 10 Jun 2009 - 8:19

Well, I read some articles about the halberd, and it was mainly used against cavalry. The axe-part was used against the limbs of the horse, and when the poor knight fell of his horse the spear head was used to pierce the armor, thus killing him. Later in the 16th century the Halberd developed into strictly a thrusting weapon.

Now, maybe the all weapons can't be transcribed perfectly into mini-games – I mean, spears IMHO should give +1 strength or something when charged by a cavalry (this is more a WFB discussion though). And since Cavalry are so rare in Mordheim, I just don't see how giving a +1S or so makes the halberd more attractive (and that is kind of the essence of this discussion, am I right?).

I know for example that parry is not perhaps the most adequate rule for the Halberd, I was rather trying to find a way to make the Halberd more of a defensive weapon, since I find this its essence in a sens.
Maybe I'm just far out...
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PostSubject: Re: Why take Halberds?   Wed 10 Jun 2009 - 10:45

In our last campaign, if I remember correctly, we saw two halberds. One was on a black skaven and it was actually quite scary. With his high init, he was striking first against people while still retaining his very high strength. This campaign we decided that in addition to 1 str, halberd users will strick first if initiutives are tied. I'm considering giving one to a hero because chances are, I'll be fighting a lot of dwarfs and orcs. I don't think they were every bad, just situational.
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